Thursday I had one of my oldest friends visit me.
She and I were in middle school together at the American School of Niamey in Niamey, Niger. Now, Patricia lives with her gourmet chef husband who works at (I believe, don't quote me) Forty1North. He also offers cooking classes from his home if anyone is in the area. They have an adorable little boy, Will, and live in Rhode Island. When she came down to visit her dad and grandparents, she drove even further down to spend some time with me and see our home and family. The last time we were together, she was pregnant, practically due even, and living in DC. Now she has an almost 5 year old child. How time does fly.
Trish was my best friend in Niamey. Though the years have passed and we each developed new friendships, this is one of those that will always be there. We don't talk often but now follow each other's lives with the blogs and facebook and it's wonderful to feel reconnected, even if we do only see each other once every 5 years or so. She didn't make it to my wedding, I didn't make it to hers. We don't live in the same town even when the GlobeHoppers do make it back stateside. But there will always be a special place in my heart for her.
Sunday we went to the Messiah Methodist Church in Springfield for the spring concert of bluegrass mass, touted as 'where Africa meets Appalachia.' I don't really know how to qualify it. There were spirituals, country, bluegrass, a lot of banjo, mandolin and fiddle. A "mass" of sorts, by the loosest definition only though. My mom sings with this group when she can, it's a condensed program so they practice hard for a few weeks, perform, and that's it for several months. The next thing is Handel's Messiah again in November. I enjoyed it for the kids to watch the instrumentalists, the mandolin player was amazing and the kids noticed his fingers fly. We don't do much now that we're in Virginia, instead relying on the ease and comfort of just being here for our entertainment, but every once in a while we do try to get some culture, no matter how different it might be. A performance of bluegrass mass in a Methodist church? Why not. Just about anything is worth seeing/doing once, and all told it really was pretty well done.
Next weekend is another busy one. We're going separate ways on Saturday - Rebecca is out with my mom all day, Katherine to a French program at Osbourne Park HS all day, Jonathon to his First Penance, and then the boys to the Montclair carnival. On days like that my primary goal is to just not lose anyone.